What IS An American Car, Anyway?

Americans love lists, so this one is a sure thing---the 15 most American cars. Cars.com put it out today. They consider five factors:

  • The final-assembly location
  • The origin of parts in the car as reported for the American Automobile Labeling Act
  • The origin country (or countries) for its engines
  • The origin country (or countries) for transmissions
  • The number of Americans its parent automaker employs at the factory level

So let's have a look:

  1. Jeep Cherokee.
  2. Honda Odyssey.
  3. Honda Ridgeline.
  4. Honda Passport.
  5. Chevrolet Corvette.
  6. Acura MDX.
  7. Honda Pilot.
  8. Chevrolet Colorado.
  9. GMC Canyon.
  10. Acura RDX.
  11. Chevrolet Camaro.
  12. Toyota Avalon.
  13. Ford F-150.
  14. Honda Accord.
  15. Toyota Tundra.

Yes, that's right. Nine of the 15 most American cars have names like Honda, Acura, and Toyota. They've been building cars here for years. And the number one car---the Jeep Cherokee? Nothing's more American than Jeep, right? Fiat, an Italian car company has owned Jeep--as well as Chrysler and Dodge---for the last five years.

Northern California-based Tesla might have been on the list, but Cars.com Senior Editor Kelsey Mays tells me Tesla didn't provide answers about sourcing that Cars.com would need to make its determination.

That means the only cars on this list made by an American-owned company are the Chevrolet Corvette, Colorado and Camaro, the GMC Canyon and the Ford F-150. And there are three Hondas that score higher in terms of American content.

So---what IS an American car, anyway? I'll bet you have an answer. Click the "comment" button below and let me know how much of a role American content or American-owned brands play in your decision to buy a car---and whether you'd buy an American-owned brand with lower American content than a brand owned by an overseas company.

And---I hope you'll join Kitty O'Neal, Dana Hess, Kelly Brothers and me for The KFBK Afternoon News between 4 and 7 on 93.1 FM, 1530 AM and on the iHeartRadio app.

Mike Hagerty

Mike Hagerty

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